This past spring, Gov. Paterson pardoned a young immigrant with a minor criminal record dating back to his teenage years. Shortly thereafter, the governor announced his intention to establish a pardons panel to review the cases of immigrants facing deportation on account of old or minor convictions. Reminder, the deadline established by the New York Clemency Unit for applicants desiring to have their cases reviewed is fast approaching.
As outlined by the Clemency Unit, the application deadline is October 1, 2010 and individuals seeking pardons should submit the following information by way of a letter:
• Applicant's name
• Applicant's address
• A contact phone number for the applicant or his or her legal representative or advocate
• Applicant's date of birth
• Applicant's country of birth or citizenship
• Applicant's Social Security Number
• Whether Immigration proceeding are pending and the status of those proceedings
• What was the crime (or crimes) for which the applicant is seeking a pardon
• A short description of the crime and the place where it occurred
• Date of sentencing and the sentence received
• Whether the applicant is currently in State or federal custody or under parole supervision
Applicants should also submit any other information that might be helpful to the Pardon Panel, including but not limited to information regarding their family circumstances, their employment, any community or other public service they have performed, and any rehabilitation programs they have attended.
The letters should be sent to the following address:
The Executive Clemency Unit
New York State Division of Parole
97 Central Avenue
Albany, New York 12206
Arlene M. Roberts is the author of The Faces of Detention and Deportation: A Report on the Forced Repatriation of Immigrants from the English-speaking Caribbean.